Leading thoroughbred racing and breeding figures have today launched Thoroughbred Industry Careers – a not for profit organisation seeking to safeguard the long-term future of the billion dollar industry by strengthening its reputation amongst the young and making it an employer of choice for future generations of Australians.
Adrian Bott/Gai Waterhouse Racing, Arrowfield Stud, the Australian Turf Club, Chris Waller Racing, Godolphin Australia, Lindsay Park Racing and McEvoy Mitchell Racing are among those providing the knowledge, expertise and investment necessary for Thoroughbred Industry Careers (TIC) to address the critical staff shortages facing the industry.
Arrowfield’s owner John Messara says, “I have never been more confident about the future of Australian racing and breeding, but our capacity for growth is threatened by diminishing numbers of people to fill the many roles within the industry.
“We can offer not only excellent career options, but also a lifestyle connected with the land, an extraordinary animal, a vibrant global community and an incredibly exciting sport.
“Thoroughbred Industry Careers will make it much easier for people to find us, learn about what we do and access quality training and assistance, and I’m very pleased to support it.”
Thoroughbred racing and breeding currently employs 75,000 people in full-time positions across the country and with the 6.6% employment growth forecasted by the Department of Employment for the racing industry over the next five years, the industry is banding together to ensure staffing levels can meet demand now and into the future.
Central to the plan is the launch of www.thoroughbredindustrycareers.com.au which provides a one-stop shop for information on employment and educational opportunities available to anyone considering a career in the thoroughbred industry in Australia. The website caters for students, parents and careers advisors, outlining the breadth and depth of employment opportunities available.
Another cornerstone of the initiative will be the ‘Explorer Cadetship’- a 12-month stud and stable horsemanship and mentoring program. This will include a 12-week residential component with practical and theoretical training, followed by two paid work-experience placements at leading racing stables and stud farms. The program is designed to allow young people the opportunity to explore the thoroughbred industry before deciding which area they may like to pursue as a career. The first intake of 40 students will commence study in 2019 and applications will open in November.
Planning is also underway for TIC to:
- launch Pony Racing in partnership with Racing NSW in 2019 as a way of encouraging Grass Roots involvement for young riders and their communities in the sport. This will be modelled on similar programs running in Ireland, England and America,
- develop a numeracy and literacy program for school children based on the successful British charity ‘Racing to School’,
- integrate further with school and tertiary career expos and create awareness amongst careers advisors on opportunities available for their students,
- develop additional educational programs to expand pathways into the industry, with particular focus on a Graduate Program,
- develop relationships with government, equestrian communities and inter-school events and leading brands like the Royal Agricultural Society to implement education initiatives and create awareness of industry careers and their pathways,
- work with the racing and breeding industries to improve existing staff retention and welfare levels.
Lindy Maurice, who has extensive marketing experience within the thoroughbred industry, has been appointed to oversee the organisation. She has engaged with all sectors of the equine industry during its development.
“You can’t be what you can’t see, so Thoroughbred Industry Careers is on a mission to raise the curtain on all the wonderful and rewarding careers our industry and our sport offers,” says Maurice.
“High-profile industry figures like Chris Waller and Hugh Bowman are excellent examples of how much individuals can achieve in the thoroughbred industry. Thoroughbred Industry Careers, however, will also showcase the whole army of people working behind the scenes.
Maurice said to help the industry secure a future workforce, we need to collaborate on an education platform which showcases the industry as a whole; promotes Principal Racing Authority and Breeder initiatives; engages with schools and equine communities; promotes an industry brand; and positions our industry as an ‘employer of choice’.”